1949 Indy 500 Winner

1947 Diedt-Offenhauser

Offered by Mecum | Indianapolis, Indiana | July 10-18, 2020

Photo – Mecum

Emil Diedt was a California-based fabricator whose name is closely associated with post-war racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. This car, the Blue Crown Spark Plugs Special, competed at Indy in four consecutive years, from 1947 through 1950. It’s results were:

  • 1947 Indianapolis 500 – 2nd (with Bill Holland)
  • 1948 Indianapolis 500 – 2nd (with Holland)
  • 1949 Indianapolis 500 – 1st (with Holland)
  • 1950 Indianapolis 500 – 2nd (with Holland)

That’s the mark of a pretty dominant car. It’s powered by a 270ci Offenhauser inline-four that drives the front wheels, thus pulling the car through corners instead of pushing it. This car wears its Indy-winning livery and has spent time in the IMS museum, where it ultimately belongs.

But instead, you can go out and buy it. It’s one of the not-all-that-many 500-winning cars in private hands. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $4,000,000.

HRG Aerodynamic

1947 H.R.G. Aerodynamic by Fox & Nicholl

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Alcacer do Sal, Portugal | September 20-21, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

HRG Engineering was founded in 1936 by Edward Halford, Guy Robins, and Henry Ronald Godfrey, whose initials comprise the company’s name. Godfrey’s experience included stints at GN and Frazer Nash.

HRG‘s output was low – only 241 cars produced between 1935 and 1956. Six models were offered, including the 1945-1949 Aerodynamic as seen here. It’s powered by a 1.5-liter inline-four from Singer and wears bodywork from Fox & Nicholls.

The car was discovered by the current owner in 1989 and restored. Prior to that, it had Portuguese race history in the 1940s and 50s. Only 45 examples of the Aerodynamic were produced, and with an active HRG owners group, they don’t change hands that often. Click here for more info and here for more from this collection.

Update: Sold $181,745.

Figoni et Falaschi Narval

1947 Delahaye 135MS Narval Cabriolet by Figoni et Falaschi

Offered by Mecum | Monterey, California | August 15-17, 2019

Photo – Mecum

If this car were to be built today, it would ride about four inches lower. At least. That upside-down bathtub styling just looks right at home sucking on the ground. But the roads were different in 1947. Especially in France. And who am I to nitpick a Figoni et Falaschi design?

The Delahaye 135MS is powered by a 3.6-liter inline-six probably making about 145 horsepower. These cars were produced both before and after the war, technically from about 1938 through the end of Delahaye production in 1954.

The “Narval” name, if you haven’t figured it out, alludes to the car’s somewhat narwhal-like appearance. Only seven such Delahayes were bodied like this, and this one has been in the same hands for the last 50 years. It’s a million-dollar car, no doubt. You can see more about it here and more from Mecum’s Monterey sale here.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $2,600,000.

Update: Not sold, Mecum Chicago 2019.

Extralusso 6C

1947 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Sport Cabriolet by Stabilimenti Farina

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | June 30, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

We’ve featured a pair of other Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Sport Cabriolets – each of them different. Here is another one, with styling penned by Giovanni Michelotti while working his first gig at Stabilimenti Farina, which was founded by the brother of Pinin Farina. The body is described as “Extralusso,” which means “extra luxury.” So I guess it’s pretty nice inside.

The 6C dated to 1927, and the 2500 version of the car went on sale in 1938. It would go on hiatus during the war, and return for a brief period until 1952. This post-war example is powered by the same pre-war 2.5-liter inline-six that produced 90 horsepower in post-war Sport trim.

It is thought that only a handful of these cars were bodied by Farina, but all of them had slight differences. Only two are known to remain. It’s an attractive car in nice colors and should command between $280,000-$340,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

1947 Dolo

1947 Dolo Type JB10

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 9, 2018

Photo – Artcurial

There were a lot of car companies that popped up after World War Two showing prototypes at auto shows and then promptly disappearing. Dolo was one such marque. Usually these cars exist only in grainy scans of old sales literature developed when the company’s founders thought they had a chance to make it big.

The JB10 was shown by Brun, Dolo & Galtier at the 1947 Paris Auto Salon. It was a front-wheel drive car powered by a 592cc flat engine making 23 horsepower. I don’t believe the engine is still with this car, however. The roof was a Plexiglas dome, which is kind of weird. The company went around taking orders (and payments) but never honored them. The company did build a second car but its whereabouts are unknown.

This car was discovered in storage at the Montlhéry circuit and entered the collection it is being offered from in 1967. It’s all-original and was originally blue. As a one-off it should bring between $7,500-$15,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $33,585.

Four Cars from Rétromobile

Four Cars from Rétromobile

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 9, 2018


1947 Dolo Type JB10

Photo – Artcurial

There were a lot of car companies that popped up after World War Two showing prototypes at auto shows and then promptly disappearing. Dolo was one such marque. Usually these cars exist only in grainy scans of old sales literature developed when the company’s founders thought they had a chance to make it big.

The JB10 was shown by Brun, Dolo & Galtier at the 1947 Paris Auto Salon. It was a front-wheel drive car powered by a 592cc flat engine making 23 horsepower. I don’t believe the engine is still with this car, however. The roof was a Plexiglas dome, which is kind of weird. The company went around taking orders (and payments) but never honored them. The company did build a second car but its whereabouts are unknown.

This car was discovered in storage at the Montlhéry circuit and entered the collection it is being offered from in 1967. It’s all-original and was originally blue. As a one-off it should bring between $7,500-$15,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $33,585.


1931 Salomon Prototype

Photo – Artcurial

Jean-Marie-Jules Salomon co-founded Le Zebre early in his career. He later worked for Citroen and then Peugeot. From 1928 through 1939 he worked at Rosengart. While at Rosengart (which did pretty well building light cars themselves), Salomon designed and built his own cyclecar prototype.

This light, two-seat roadster features a tubular axle and front brakes. The body is aluminium, which wasn’t all that common in 1931. It’s powered by a two-stroke single-cylinder engine. It’s in pretty original condition and would require a full restoration (it’s missing things like gauges, the entire floor, you know… some basics). But still, it’s a unique car from the 1930s and it can be yours for between $12,000-$18,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $7,301.


1927 Taupin 1100 Prototype

Photo – Artcurial

Here’s yet another one-off prototype car from this same collection. Not much is known about this history of this car, other than it seems to be assembled and custom made. The radiator is from a Darmont. The engine is a SCAP unit of 1.1-liters.

It was built by an actual engineer, so there was some thought put into it. The wheels have independent suspension, so it sits very low. It’s almost like the grandfather of the Ariel Atom… if an Atom only had three wheels. Customized by the owner to add such creature comforts as a cushion to sit on, this thing is largely original and just might be in running condition. It should cost the next owner between $6,000-$9,500. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $23,363.


1948 De Coucy Prototype Record

Photo – Artcurial

What we have here was someone’s – a Count de Coucy, to be more specific – idea of a land speed record car. A trained engineer, de Coucy built some high-revving engines of his own design – we’re talking engines that revved to 10,000 rpm in the 1930s. In 1935, he designed a 500cc engine capable of that 10,000 rpm.

Unfortunately, he was arrested by the Germans during WWII as a part of the Resistance and then his workshop was bombed in 1943. In 1948 he took the chassis from a Formula One car he was working on and built a single-seater enclosed record car. The 500cc engine never made it in, but it now carries a 1.1-liter straight-four instead (which is not completely installed). The car was never run and is being sold in hopes that someone will pick up the cause. It should bring between $6,000-$9,500. Click here for more info and here for more from Artcurial.

Update: Sold $55,488.

Cisitalia 202 SC

1947 Cisitalia 202 SC Cabriolet by Vignale

Offered by Gooding & Company | Amelia Island, Florida | March 10, 2017

Photo – Gooding & Company

From 25 feet (or, you know, in photos), this Cisitalia might look like any number of postwar sports cars. But it’s coachbuilt – by Vignale, no less – and the details on this car are fantastic.

The 202 was Cisitalia’s main road car, introduced in 1947 and produced through 1952. There were some pretty exotic versions of it, including the CMM and the famed SMM Spider Nuvolari. It’s borderline blasphemous to call any Cisitalia “pedestrian” but I think the attractive yet subdued styling on this Cabriolet, coupled with the fact that it lacks any real racing pretensions, is what makes it special.

This car is powered by a 63 horsepower, 1.1-liter straight-four. Coupes came first, but the Cabriolet is rarer, with only about 60 built (of a total 202 production run of 170 cars). This example was discovered in Argentina before coming stateside in 2003. The restoration dates all the way back to 2016 and the chassis number is an early one. It is expected to bring between $525,000-$625,000. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Gooding’s Amelia Island lineup.

Update: Sold $550,000.

Studebaker Stake Bed

1947 Studebaker M15A Stake Bed

Offered by Mecum | Anaheim, California | November 17, 2016

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

You’ll never see another truck like this in this shape. The odds are simply too low. First of all, it was built by Studebaker, so production numbers were much lower than its GM or Ford counterparts. As such, people who collect Studebakers as opposed to Fords or Chevys are a much rarer breed. Add to it that stake bed trucks were used and abused on farms across the country and you end up with a very small survival rate.

This one has been immaculately restored. The M Series line of trucks was introduced for the ill-fated 1941 model year and would resume, post war, in 1946 and run through 1948 (they were built in 1942 as well before the company switched to military production). The M15A was only available from the factory with a pickup bed and was the largest such model offered before you got into heavier truck territory. This was converted to its current look later on.

Power comes from an 80 horsepower 2.8-liter straight-six. The transmission is classified as a very old-truck-like “crashbox” four-speed. In 1947, Studebaker built 6,738 of these trucks and over 67,000 commercial vehicles in general that year alone. That number is larger than Studebaker’s entire pre-war commercial vehicle production total combined! We think this truck is awesome. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $14,000.

Dellow Prototype

1947 Dellow Prototype

Offered by Historics at Brooklands | November 26, 2016

Photo - Historics at Brooklands

Photo – Historics at Brooklands

Dellow was a motorcar manufacturer from a city near Birmingham that was founded to make a very specific type of automobile by Ken Delingpole and Ron Lowe in 1949. Early cars were based on the Austin 7 chassis, but these were meant for Post-War off-road Trials racing, hence their decent ground clearance and rugged looks.

The car you see here is thought to be the third Dellow built – a true prototype. It sits on a chassis from a 1938 Austin 7 van – a longer wheelbase than the base 7. The engine is from a Ford and it’s a 1.2-liter straight-four. It led a life on the circuit – from hillclimbs, to road-racing, to off-road trials, racking up wins as it did. Some famous drivers got their starts driving Dellows up muddy English hills.

It’s been treated to a complete restoration and has become one of the best documented examples of the marque. The last Dellows were produced in 1959 and some people see it as the ancestor to the Lotus. The factory turned out only about 300 cars during its existence, making this a rare car today. It should bring between $19,500-$24,500. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $20,859.

Purple Rolls-Royce

1947 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith Convertible by J.S. Inskip

Offered by Gooding & Company | Pebble Beach, California | August 20-21, 2016

Photo - Gooding & Company

Photo – Gooding & Company

The Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith was Rolls’ middle-of-the-line model and it was produced between 1946 and 1958. In 12 years, only 1,883 were produced, keeping with Rolls-Royce’s exclusivity pattern.

But, as you can see, this is no ordinary Silver Wraith. It was ordered new by a wealthy New Yorker and first displayed at the 1949 New York International Motor Show. It is powered by a 4.3-liter straight-six making 126 horsepower (aka “Adequate”). The body, which was originally black, was bodied by J.S. Inskip, who was the Rolls-Royce importer in New York.

Not to oversell it, but this is one of the most stylish cars ever bodied by an American coachbuilder – especially after the war. The original owner put it up for sale in 1952 for $12,500. A couple of owners later, in the 1980s, the car was redone to it’s current, striking, purple. This five owner car will draw a crowd wherever it goes and is expected to bring between $1,250,000-$2,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Gooding & Company.

Update: Not sold.

Update: Not sold, Mecum Monterey 2019, high bid of $500,000.